A 60FT fake snowman that vanished from a town centre has turned up safe and well - if a little deflated.
The inflatable Snowy the Snowman had been missing from Wicklow town for a week but has now been returned, accompanied by a sign saying 'Sorry'.
Following a tip off, Garda Anthony McHugh and Garda Neil Doyle located an airless Snowy at the Halpin Monument in the town early this morning.
The colossal installation had been the centrepiece of the locality's Victorian-themed Christmas celebrations.
The tip-off to gardai came from an anonymous source
Wicklow Chamber of Commerce said it is delighted the decoration has been recovered.
The snowman was installed on top of the flat roof of a local shop in the town's Fitzwilliam Square on November 25 as part of the festivities, which involved the switching on of the Christmas lights.
But Snowy wasn't in situ for long, going missing the following day in an apparent prank.
Having invested in decorating the town, the chamber of commerce appealed for the snowman's return and they got their wish today.
Snowy came to national attention, with a 'Help Find Snowy' page set up on Facebook by organisers of the festival.
Local residents were baffled at the mysterious disappearance. The snowman vanished on Monday night last week without a trace.
Organisers of Wicklow's Victorian Christmas were immediately convinced Snowy had been kidnapped.
“He was firmly fastened to the roof and the material he is made of is very heavy. The straps attaching him to the roof were cut. There has to have been a number of people involved and they would have needed an industrial lorry to fit him in,” they told a local newspaper.
All that remains now is for Snowy to be pumped up again.